Updated Thu, Aug 21, 2014 8:56 am
The 77th Old Settlers Reunion returns to the village of Jacksonville on Wednesday, serving as a homecoming to those from the small community while welcoming out-of-town guests.
The six-day festival from Aug. 27 to Sept. 1 features pageants, live entertainment, carnival rides, parades as well as craft and food vendors.
Festival organizer Becky Koons-Perry said there are more arts and crafts vendors participating in this year’s event than ever before. The festivities begin Wednesday evening with the opening parade at 6 p.m. followed by the introduction of the Old Settlers Reunion queen candidates.
Wednesday evening will also feature a performance by the Trimble High School band and singing by the Class of 1962. The Little Miss Old Settlers talent competition will also be held Wednesday evening.
On Thursday at 6 p.m. is the Jr. Miss Old Settlers style show, followed by the coronation of the Little Miss Old Settlers Reunion.
Friday will feature a clogging performance at 6 p.m., music by Jason Scott Hook at 7 p.m. and Steve Newton & The Obvious Tragedy at 8:30 p.m.
There is plenty to do on Saturday beginning with Kids’ Day activities on Sixth Street from 10 a.m. to noon. The Dave Davis Memorial 5K Run/Walk will also take place on Sixth Street beginning at 10 a.m. A tractor pull will be held at noon followed by a performance from the Trimble Twp. Youth League Cheerleaders at 1 p.m. and the Logan Twirling Superstars at 2 p.m.
Rockin’ Reggie will perform at 3 p.m. on Saturday followed by the Cute Kids competition at 5 p.m. Jr. Miss Old Settlers Reunion will be crowned at 6:30 p.m. and Nashville’s Alexis Gomez will perform at 8 p.m.
Sunday’s activities will include the Old Settlers Reunion Idol competition from 1-5 p.m. The winner will close out the festival with a performance on Monday afternoon.
Sunday will also feature an auction from 5-6 p.m. and the coronation of Miss Old Settlers Reunion at 6:30 p.m. Gospel group The Phiffers will perform at 8:30 p.m.
The festival’s Grande Parade will begin at 11 a.m. on Monday followed by the introductions of visiting queens and the visiting queens luncheon. The festival will end at 4 p.m. on Monday.
Koons-Perry said that the annual festival started out as a picnic in The Grove and grew from there. She said many families come together for the event. She herself followed in her father’s footsteps in organizing Old Settlers Reunion, noting that her father Bill Koons helped coordinate the event for over 50 years.
For information about Old Settlers Reunion, visit www.jacksonvilleoldsettlersreunion.com.